Two young children have died and a woman is in critical condition following a flat fire ‘started deliberately’ this morning.
Emergency services were called to Fairisle Close in Clifton, Nottingham, at 3.17am today, where the first floor flat of a two-storey property was alight.
The two children, aged three and one, were treated at the scene for smoke inhalation and taken to hospital but pronounced dead, while the woman remains badly hurt.
Neighbouring properties were temporarily evacuated as fire crews tackled the blaze, which was extinguished at around 4am.
A joint investigation by fire and police services concluded the fire was started deliberately.
‘We are appealing for witnesses who were in the area at that time and saw something suspicious to please come forward and help us with the investigation.
‘We have a team of detectives who are working hard to establish the circumstances and our inquiries remain in their early stages.’
Inspector Ben Lawrence, of Nottinghamshire Police, said members of the local community should expect a high presence of officers in the area whilst a scene remains in place and inquiries continue.
He said: ‘This tragic incident has resulted in two children sadly losing their lives and my thoughts, first and foremost, are with their loved ones at this time.
‘We understand residents living nearby will be shocked by this news and have concerns about what happened.
‘We will continue to maintain a policing presence in the area and we will be working to reassure them as best we can in the coming days.
‘If anyone has any concerns I’d encourage them to speak to one of our officers.’
Group Manager for Prevention at Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service, Chris Clark, added: ‘All of our thoughts are with the family of those involved and we send our deepest condolences.
‘Alongside the police we will now investigate the cause of this fire and tragic loss of life.
‘We recognise what has happened will be deeply distressing for the local community, and we will be in the area to offer reassurance to residents over the coming days.”
Nottingham City Council leader, Councillor David Mellen, said: ‘I am so saddened to hear this tragic news. The loss of two young children is completely heartbreaking.
‘We’ll do all we can to support the family and community at this deeply upsetting time.’
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